Time has released its annual “Time 100” issue, recognizing the 100 most influential people around the world with the extraordinary honor of being put in a numbered list. As it is every year, the list covers a wide realm of “influence,” everything from politics to science to being the Pope, but with a healthy dollop of celebrity, because Time would like to sell magazines. Two of the five separate covers belong to Kanye West and Bradley Cooper, while another belongs to Supreme Court cult hero Ruth Bader Ginsburg.
Alongside the likes of Barack Obama, Vladimir Putin, Angela Merkel, Hillary Clinton, and Benjamin Netanyahu are Amy Schumer, John Oliver, Emma Watson, Chris Pratt, Kevin Hart, Richard Linklater, and Julianne Moore. And throughout, these various Titans, Icons, Pioneers, Artists, and Leaders are paid tribute by the people most qualified to recognize their authority: other famous people.
“Mitch McConnell’s mind is a marvelous machine,” trills John Boehner, the orange, alliterative Oompa-Loompa of D.C. “Unlike many crony capitalists who troll the halls of Congress looking for favors, the Kochs have consistently lobbied against special-interest politics,” gushes Rand Paul of the Koch brothers, and their tireless fight against outsiders wielding undue influence over democracy who are not the Koch brothers. There are also some questionable entries. Like these:
“His eyes and ears are attuned to nuance”—Oprah Winfrey on Lee Daniels, director of nuanced movies like Precious and The Paperboy, and the creator of Empire, a show in which a man reacts to his son being gay by literally putting him in a garbage can.
“’Art reflects life,’ Tim McGraw says, alluding to an idea that goes back to Plato and Aristotle”—Jon Meacham on the composer of “Truck Yeah.”
“I’m always trying to find the best words to talk to my kids (and myself) about growing up, but you can’t top her beautifully articulated advice. The haters are gonna hate, but, well, shake it off”—Mariska Hargitay on that other prevailing philosopher of our time, Taylor Swift.
“Despite the flamboyance, the self-aggrandizement and the self-promotion (Kim set out to break the Internet by baring her bum in an extraordinary photograph), Kim comes across as an enviable big sister in a clan where everyone seems to love one another. Are they indeed today’s Brady Bunch?”—Martha Stewart asking the question that everyone who doesn’t know how analogies work has asked themselves. And specifically, that Martha Stewart is asking the readers of Time, because Kanye West was deemed a “Titan” and presumably demanded Kim be named one as well.
“Kanye West would be the first person to tell you he belongs on this list”—Elon Musk, making the truest statement in the entire article.
Physical copies of the “Time 100” issue go on sale Friday, should you need to fill your time capsule with an explanation for future generations of what the hell happened.